Bridge Shim? How to Lower a Bridge?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by jasper383, Jul 7, 2008.

  1. jasper383

    jasper383 Supporting Member

    Dec 5, 2004
    Durham NC
    I have a Fender Japan Precision Bass. The original bridge was starting to corrode a bit, so I replaced it with a Wilkinson Vintage bridge.

    I am certain (nearly) I installed the bridge correctly. I have done this sort of thing many many times.

    The bridge now seems to sit a little too low on the body of the bass, that is, the saddles need to be raised just about as high as they can go to get medium action (3/32" at the 12th fret). The saddle are now way up high, and the screws are pretty steeply angled, and I am uncomfortable with this.

    Is there something I can do to "raise" the bridge up a tiny bit, so that the saddle screws aren't maxed out? Can a bridge be shimmed?
  2. dblbass

    dblbass Commercial User

    Mar 24, 2007
    Beacon, NY
    Owner of MBJ guitars, Maker of fine sawdust for Carl Thompson Guitars
    yep. you could just make a peice of wood the same dimentions as the bridge. same holes and such. or you could make a design out of it.
  3. stflbn


    May 10, 2007
    or... just put a shim in the front side of the neck pocket resulting in raising the string height rather then the back side of the neck pocket as is normally done to lower string height.

    More frequently changing bridges results in the bridges not going low enough, so you can shim the back side of the neck pocket to adjust the angle of the neck and thusly lowering the strings in the process. Doing the opposite would raise the action of hte bass allowing you more room to adjust on the bridge.
  4. jasper383

    jasper383 Supporting Member

    Dec 5, 2004
    Durham NC
    Any suggestions as to thickness of the shim? Or rather, how to decide what thickness shim to use? It would be nice to get it right the first time. ;)
  5. T-MOST


    Dec 10, 2004
    NJ via NYC
    I would shim the neck instead of the bridge. It just makes more sense. Cut a strip off of a business card about 1/4 of an inch wide and drop it the bottom of the neck pocket.
  6. ReidK

    ReidK Jst sy n t lsy cmprsn.

    That will make it worse, if I understand the situation correctly. You can tilt the neck back by putting a shim at the bottom (nearest the pickups), but at least in my experience, you still end up raising the higher frets. Is there a trick to this that I'm missing?

    What you might do, if you haven't already, is remove the neck and see if there's a shim in there that you can take out.


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